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GM Davorin Kuljasevic - The Importance of Modern Middlegame Tabiyas - Video 5

Opening: C11: French Defense

Player(s): Karjakin, Carlsen, Caruana, Meier, Grischuk, Vocaturo, Robson, Vachier-Lagrave, Bluebaum

The French defense, 1.e4 e6 2.d4 d5, is one of the most popular openings on the club level. From Black's perspective, the solid center and clear plans make this opening quite appealing. On the other hand, White usually does not mind taking the space advantage in the center with the e4-e5 thrust. Thus, we often get dynamic positions with a blocked pawn center in the French. An excellent example is the main line of the Steinitz variation: 3.Nc3 Nf6 4.e5 Nfd7 5.f4 c5 6.Nf3 Nc6 7.Be3. In this opening tabiya, both sides have a variety of plans. Black can continue 7...cxd4 8.Nxd4 Bc5 or 8...Qb6; 7...Qb6 immediately; or 7...a6 followed by 8...b5. White, in turn, can also choose from several different setups: the aggressive Qd2 with 0-0-0; positional Be2 with 0-0; or maximalist Ne2 followed by c3 and g3. In this chapter, we will focus on one of the important middlegame tabiyas in the Steinitz variation that usually arises after the following moves: 7...Be7 8.Qd2 0-0 9.Be2 a6 10.0-0 b5. Download HERE the PGN file with the games.

Teacher's library (36) C11 Karjakin Carlsen Caruana Meier Grischuk Vocaturo Robson Vachier-Lagrave Bluebaum midgame

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